Matching Provincial Regulations with Funding
Be it resolved that SUMA demand that any Provincial Government policy or regulation that puts a financial burden on any municipality be accompanied by Provincial funding, including Provincially funded enforcement.
Saskatchewan's municipal legislation recognizes that municipalities are a responsible and accountable level of government within their jurisdiction, created and empowered by the Province of Saskatchewan. The legislation further notes that municipalities are subject to all provincial laws and are also to certain limits and restrictions in the provincial interest as set out in municipal legislation and in other Acts. The practical application of this is that the municipalities are delegated to certain powers, responsibilities and authorities by the province in the interest of ensuring all residents of Saskatchewan receive comparable municipal services. Over the past number of years the province has worked diligently to increase local autonomy where it is evident that local issues are at hand and there is no over-riding provincial interest. This provides elected municipal officials with the authority and the autonomy to act in the best interests of their community. However, like natural persons, municipalities are also subject to provincial legislation. There are some areas where the province maintains its authority and establishes requirements either through legislation or regulation. Often, those are in areas where public safety could be at risk. Provincial funding sources such as revenue sharing and capital grant programs are designed to assist municipalities in meeting their operational and capital needs, by providing access to unconditional funding where possible. However, where appropriate, municipalities must continue to balance provincial funding against sustainable rate and fee structures that strive for service cost recovery.